Patrick Mahomes Toasts “The Greatness That Is Women’s Sports” In TIME100 Gala Speech

Patrick Mahomes
TIME

Even if you’re annoyed at how dynastic the Kansas City Chiefs are proving to be, or are a fan of a rival team, I don’t know how you don’t at least have immense respect for Patrick Mahomes. In addition to his obvious greatness on the gridiron, Mahomes has been nothing but a model citizen off the field since arriving in the NFL.

As a major person of influence in pop culture, naturally the superstar quarterback was in attendance for the TIME100 Gala. Given that grand platform to say whatever he pleased, Mahomes opted to shine a spotlight on the increasing prominence of women’s sports — largely brought on by basketball sensation Caitlin Clark.

Mahomes noted how ESPN’s most-watched college basketball game ever was when Clark’s Iowa team faced off against South Carolina. Haters are quick to note that Clark struggled in an exhibition setting for the Indiana Fever as a WNBA rookie. I think she’ll be just fine.

Anyway, in the speech, Clark’s name wasn’t mentioned, but she gets plenty of press, and I’m sure Mahomes knew that. Instead, he painted a more all-encompassing picture of how much women’s sports are taking off, with a nod to his family’s own involvement. He shouted out his wife Brittany as a co-owner of the women’s soccer team, the Kansas City Current.

I was actually surprised to learn from Mahomes’ monologue that Coco Gauff’s U.S. Open victory was viewed by one million more people than the men’s final. That’s even more intriguing since Novak Djokovic was adding to his record of men’s Grand Slam singles titles. I guess not everyone on the men’s side can be the beloved draw Rafael Nadal is.

Talk about great timing for Mahomes to make this grand proclamation, too, with his name being all over the headlines on Monday amid news that the Chiefs will face the Baltimore Ravens to kick off the 2024 NFL season. We’ve got the full NFL schedule release happening on Wednesday night, but before that? We get to see Caitlin Clark’s proper WNBA debut on Tuesday when the Fever visit the Connecticut Sun to begin her rookie campaign in earnest.

Those who love Mahomes and/or the NFL yet are resistant to Clark’s star power should reconsider. With the NBA and NHL playoffs wrapping up soon enough, all there is to look forward to for a period of months is baseball. Not to totally defecate on the legacy of “America’s pastime”, but let’s be honest, in an era of ever-decreasing attention spans, MLB is a 162-game slog. Clark’s success would be such a catalyst for the WNBA, women’s sports in general, and only give sports fans more to be heavily invested in throughout the calendar year. Sounds like a lot of upside to me. If you won’t take my word for it, listen to Patrick Mahomes.

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